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Viewpoint With Eliot Spitzer

News/Business. (2012) New. (CC) (Stereo)

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01:00:00

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PG

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San Francisco, CA, USA

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Comcast Cable

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Virtual Ch. 107 (CURNT)

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mpeg2video

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ac3

PIXEL WIDTH
528

PIXEL HEIGHT
480

TOPIC FREQUENCY

Us 17, New York 14, Sandy 10, Manhattan 8, Eliot 8, Arizona 7, Obama 6, Romney 6, Vietnam 5, Brooklyn 5, Vo 4, Fema 4, New York City 4, Nyu 3, Bellevue 3, Larry Pressler 3, The City 3, New Jersey 3, Jennifer Granholm 2, Aaron Donovan 2,
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  Current    Viewpoint With Eliot Spitzer    News/Business.   
   (2012) New. (CC) (Stereo)  

    November 1, 2012
    5:00 - 6:00pm PDT  

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endorsing the devil you know, that's one hell of an elbow! all right. worse than the devil we know according to a conservative paper. "viewpoint" is next. >> eliot: good evening. i'm eliot spitzer. this is "viewpoint." presidential candidates fear an october surprise, a sudden unpredictable event that could up-end their campaigns. hurricane sandy has been that for the 2012 campaign. but the monster storm in its aftermath have been much more. a continuing november nightmare for millions of people across the eastern seaboard and especially in new york and new jersey. the devastation across the jersey shore is staggering. in some areas homeowners are only now being allowed to inspect the ruins of what had been their homes to try and
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salvage what they can. in hoboken across the hudson river from new york city, families trapped by sandy even today, are being rescued by units of the national guard. in new york, tens of thousands of commuters lined up for buses as most subway tunnels remain flooded. federal officials have already brought in a million meals and other emergency supplies to the city and more will be needed. the totals across the country in sandy's wake at least 93 dead including 38 in new york city and 12 in new jersey. some 4.5 million homes and businesses without power. an enormous number but one that is better than it had been. an estimated $50 billion in storm-related losses, a number that keeps rising. on the campaign trail, mitt romney encountered a heckler who voiced a widespread theory of what had made the storm so deadly. >> romney: thank you for the help you provided and for the help you're going to provide. [ applause ]
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>> what about the climate? that's what caused this monster storm. >> eliot: romney didn't have an answer. his silence on the issue of climate change and casting doubt on the science of climate change cost him dearly today. new york's independent mayor mike bloomberg endorsed president obama referring both to hurricane irene last august and sandy this week. bloomberg wrote and i quote "in just 14 months, two hurricanes have forced us to evacuate nakeds, something our city had -- never done before. i want our president to place scientific evidence and risk management above electoral politics." for more, we have on the phone -- what's going on to get to millions of commuters to work tomorrow, i'm joined by phone by metropolitan transportation spokesman aaron donovan. thanks for joining us. >> thanks, governor, you bet. >> eliot: we know you've begun to get some of the subways above 34th and 42nd street moving
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again. what will be open tomorrow and then if you could, give us an update on the tunnels which seem to be the major impediment to expanding traffic. >> well, at this point in time, our subway system is essentially cut in half. we have some service running between the bronx and manhattan and queens and manhattan. that's terminating midtown. the rest of the lines operating in brooklyn and southern queens are terminating in downtown brooklyn. to get people across the east river, we normally have six tunnels underneath the six rivers that are -- service the subway lines. right now we're limited to operating buses over the manhattan and the brooklyn bridges and so instead of six tunnels, we have buses over three bridges. we're working hard to get those tunnels back up. >> eliot: tell us what you can, we all understand the tunnels got flooded. a lot of people don't appreciate when the tunnels are filled with water, it is not easy -- you don't just pull a plug and have them drain out. what's involved in getting the
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water out of the tunnels. when we say they're flooded does it mean there are two feet or they're flooded from the sort of the roadway that you would ride on if you were driving through them or if the subway train were going through them all the way up to the ceiling? give us a visual sense of what it means. >> okay well speaking of the brooklyn brooklyn-battery tunnel, that was filled all the way to the max of the ceiling. this was -- both of the twin tubes of that tunnel are filled each with 43 million gallons of water. to get that out our crews are working around the clock with pumps. you're right. there's no way to open up a drain because the water is already underneath the river. of in the case of the six subway tunnels, we are sending in -- we have three high-powered, extremely heavy duty traipse that come in, specially designed pumping trains that run on diesel power that go down into the tunnel. they pump out 4500 gallons of
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water per minute. out. they pump it right into the drain. it goes down into the sewer system and out into new york harbor where it came from. this is the seawater that had risen as part of the 13-foot storm surge. the seawater with salt in it, it is highly corrosive to our electrical components, the third rail that powers the trains, the running rails itself. so as soon as the tunnels are dry, we walk through literally on our two feet. we have crew members walk throughout tunnels and assess every component within those tubes. >> eliot: my math isn't quick enough. give me a sense. of 45,000 gallons a minute -- whatever the number was. how long will it take to empty the tunnels then more importantly, assuming that will get done, you said the critical thing, the salt water is cor owessive to the electronics and all of the electrical connections in those tunnels. how long do you think it will take -- is there any experience that permits us to say look, within 24 hours once they're
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dry, they'll be operable or is there some period of reparations that needs to be done? >> in a general sense it takes 14 hours to four days, depending on the severity of the amount of water infiltration to get the tunnels -- just to do the pumping. you know, at this point, we do have three to four of our tunnels are now dried out thanks to the hard work of our employees, we're working around the clock. from that point we need to make sure we have con edison power and that is not always the case. at this point, we have a couple of tubes almost ready to go as soon as we get con ed power back. >> eliot: we appreciate the hard work. we understand all of the mta folks working 24 hours a day. even though fust rations are rising, folks should know the mta employees are hard at work. obviously we need that juice coming from con ed. metropolitan transportation authority spokesperson aaron donovan, thanks for your time tonight. >> thank you very much. >> eliot: for more on the
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situation on the ground, let's go to abc news correspondent brandy hitt. thanks for joining us. [ sirens ] i hear in the background some sirens. what is the latest -- let's begin with the death toll. has the search and rescue now terminated and are we moving on to the next phase? >> reporter: it is really, really sad the numbers we're starting to get eliot. we're approaching close to 100 people killed according to "the associated press." a couple of updates we received throughout the day including recently. two little boys who vanished and were ripped from their mother's arms in staten island when the storm hit, they have found the bodies of the 2 and 4-year-old little boys today. just devastating to hear that news. also, as they were searching homes in staten island today they found two more bodies inside a home they believe are a couple that lived there. the death toll just continues to rise. here in lower manhattan the power is obviously still out but it is slowly starting to come back online. of course, the city telling everyone they hope to have the power fully restored by this
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weekend. >> eliot: you know, the tragic story of those two little kids it is heart-wrenching. up to 100 numbers that are devastating. it just reinforces to folks when they get an evacuation order from the mayor or whomever, they've got to listen. the power of these storms is beyond description. you hate to hear those stories. con ed is doing what it can. i saw an e-mail from con ed today referencing next weekend the weekend after the election, as a date by which they hope to have all power back. what do you know about what is the holdup here? they have to rebuild some major substation. what has con ed been telling you? >> reporter: definitely. we talked to some of the power crews today. they feel bad because they're getting the brunt of the anger. they say we're having to move so much debris and so much sand and so much junk out of the road. some of the workers said they spent one whole day trying to clear a road just so they could get to one pole. that's why it is taking so long to get the power back on. we speak to our colleagues who
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live in new jersey today and they've been told next friday is when they'll have power restored. so they're now trying to find ways of getting to the city to work in new jersey and stay in hotels. by the way eliot hotels are booked. there is no hotel room in sight likely over the next week. this is becoming a bigger and bigger headache. people are getting frustrated. especially in the areas that have been extremely devastated by the storm. homes have been flattened. new york and new jersey. they say they haven't gotten any help in some of the are they've been waitithey haven food or extra supplies either. >> eliot: we have an image on the screen of one of the explosions at one of the stations. it may have been 14th street or 23rd street. you see the magnitude of the fireballs. you understand why it takes a long time to rebuild. your reference to the lack of hotel rooms and the difficulty. this is becoming a logistical nightmare. has been for some period of time. i hate to raise this issue but the issue of the marathon, should it be run? as of now, the marathon is scheduled to go forward on sunday. what are people saying about that? >> reporter: mixed feelings.
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some people say it is a staple of the area. we have to do it to show that new york is still strong. other people are saying are you kidding me right now! the runners will be running through areas and near neighborhood that have been completely devastated by sandy. they're wondering if it is appropriate to be holding an event like this when you have families that still have no food and water. it is a mixed feeling. we've heard from the mayor and the marathon organization. they're going to go through with it on sunday. >> eliot: my understanding is the new york roadrunners club said it is up to the mayor. if he says no, they'll call it off. the mayor has been for it. he sees it as a sign of resilience. new york city doesn't quit. that is likely to be the final word then. >> reporter: oh, definitely. that's it. it is going on sunday. that's what we keep hearing no matter what. if they think it is going to bring a sense of new york coming back together as a big staple, it will help bring the state together then the mayor feels it needs to go forward. >> eliot: maybe paul ryan will run the marathon. hate to bring politics into
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this. abc's news correspondent -- >> reporter: no comment. >> eliot: brandy hitt, so many thanks for your reporting tonight. >> reporter: thanks, eliot. >> eliot: for more on new york's struggles we've got joe bruno office emergency management. thanks for joining us on the phone. >> thank you eliot. pleasure to be here. >> eliot: one of the crises is getting power getting juice back into the electrical systems so you can get heat. you can get hot water. you can get elevators working. what do you know about con ed and what the pace may be not only in lower manhattan but also the lower boroughs and other parts of the city that have been devastated by this? >> i know that kevin burke had a press conference with the mayor and others. said that he had a good feeling about getting this -- the lower manhattan area up and running this weekend. can't tell if you it is saturday or sunday. i don't think he said that. it is a fairly conservative --
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he is a fairly conservative guy. he doesn't say things unless he believes it. they recognized it was going to be a historic storm which it was. no question about that. perhaps the storm of the century and maybe of all-time. one of the top five. what he did, they did was they shut down systems to try to avoid damage. and we saw that they brought up brighton courtland two of the networks that were protected. they brought them up quickly. i hope that will tell us something about the bowling green networks. >> eliot: one of the things that worries many people, you have seniors and when you get into a weekend it has the possibility of slightly colder temperatures, folks without heat who don't have access to hot water. does the city have the shelter space? do we have the accommodations available to take care of the many people who simply can't stay in their homes because their homes right now don't have hot water heat, elevator service, et cetera. is the city equipped right now? >> we opened up approximately 73
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shelters. with the capacity of more than 70,000. at peak, we have about 7,000 to 8,000 people there. we're a little bit lower right now. we have a lot. one thing about our whole program is we can -- we can build up if we need more. we have lots and lots more than 73 shelters. if we need it, we'll open them. our sense is that we're going to see some restorations coming in the next couple of days which will help some areas. i think the areas like staten island was so hit so heavily so overhead, most of the lines are overhead lines. trees came down, took them down. as i was hearing you talk earlier while i was hanging on, it takes a lot of time to first de-energize, remove the trees then go up and do the work. it is so slow. and in that regard, i think coneth is saying that's going to -- con ed is saying it will
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take longer. we don't have a good answer. i'm not happy about it. but i'm going to have to let them do the work that they're responsible for and probably most capable for. >> eliot: commercial, i know the public's frustration is real. you can only do what you can do. the city is doing everything possible right now. one of the news items or one of the realities that i think struck many of us was the forced evacuation of both bellevue and nyu. we hoped those as major hospitals, part of the infrastructure of our healthcare system would be immune, would have the back-up generators. any other hospitals facing the sorts of problems that forced those two hospitals to evacuate and if not when will those two be back online? >> well, you know, bellevue had a significant problem way beyond generation. they had a problem in the entire switching network and a number of other systems in the hospital that were affected by this storm and by the surge. nyu, i'm trying to think what it was. but it was also more than just the generator. the generator was good. bellevue's generator was older
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but nyu's was good but they had serious switching problems and so there became a much bigger problem and systems problem. that's why they were evacuated. we evacuated downtown, usually called downtown beacon, that hospital really because it was heavily affected by the surge and we thought it made sense and the hospital, i think essentially agreed with us. it was a relatively small population. as any others know, i think we're really turning the corner on all of the healthcare facilities, hospitals are pretty good to begin with. they're very responsible. and they've done a good job. we're doing some work on nursing homes, putting more generators in and overall we feel fairly confident that we've solved those issues. i don't think there are any others i can think of right now. >> eliot: joseph bruno commissioner of the office emergency management, thank you for sharing your time. >> you take care of yourself. >> eliot: every hurricane has its political aftermath and argument for strong federal aid
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coming right up ahead. the powerful my steal an election but they cannot steal democracy.
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people who are paid on salary not commission. they'll get straightforward guidance and be able to focus on other things, like each other, which isn't rocket science. it's just common sense. from td ameritrade. >> eliot: the focus has been on hurricane sandy and its aftermath. as we pivot back to tuesday's presidential vote, there is economic news that may swing the needle in what is still an extraordinarily tight race. it is the number of jobs added to the economy in the last month before the election. it comes to us from adp research. the day before the official job data arrives from the bureau of labor statistics. it is our number of the day. 158,000. i'll be talking about this tomorrow in more depth with robert reich but in short this is an adequate number but not great. we need about 150,000 new jobs each month just to accommodate
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new job seekers and population growth. this is basically where we've been. we've now averaged 147,000 new jobs a month this year and 153,000 new jobs a month last year. so this marks two years of steady positive job creation since the recession bottomed out. of course, these monthly numbers always set off a deafening roar of spin and shatter. we'll hear republicans say that well, this just isn't enough. and they're right. we've already seen where their trickle down policies have led us, to the cataclysm of 2008. we're now seeing the fruits of smart policies, stability and new jobs. the improvement isn't dramatic but it's real. (vo) it's an all new election special. (vo) wanda sykes. breaking the election down like a >> shut up!
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>> eliot: does it take a horrific disaster like hurricane sandy to make it clear how wrong republicans are on everything from fema to global warming. to discuss this is a pleasure to be joined by new york's own jerry nadler, congressman from new york's eighth district and one of the most thoughtful voice on capitol hill. i say that not just because you're a friend, it is true. >> great to be here. >> eliot: you look at what we have just suffered through. it certainly does highlight and galvanize the public's attention on both fema and global warming. will the lesson be learned? >> hopefully. it is too early to tell. we'll see. i mean it certainly shows thank god that those people who urged that fema not be funded or
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privatized or eliminated, thank god they weren't listened to. fema has done a tresmeddous job for us here and we need it. it is the storm of the century. but given -- >> eliot: didn't we have that last year? >> not quite. >> eliot: almost. >> almost. this is far worse than last year. >> eliot: but they're coming with greater frequency. >> that's the point of the storm of the century is now going to be -- i don't know every few years but you'll have it a lot more because the oceans are warming, there is a lot more energy in the system. you'll have more and violent storms. we have to start preparing for it. that means our infrastructure has to be upgraded in any number of ways we haven't thought about. >> eliot: i don't mean to impugn your technical background or mine. i'm not a climatologist or a scientist but i'm assimilated the articles written by extremely smart, nonpartisan folks who said exactly what did you. water levels are rising. there is greater heat in the oceans, the ice is melting
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water levels will be rising at a greater rate. this is no longer a myth, a theory. it is fact. so we need to prepare. >> we clearly need to prepare. new york is not prepared. a number of examples. an article is published a couple of years ago by some academics. storm surge in new york state they thought would happen. this is what will happen. lower manhattan will be underwater. they told us exactly what was going to happen. the only thing they didn't predict was the explosion at 14th street substation. >> eliot: right. >> we have to start thinking of things we haven't thought about. maybe we ought to have retractible seawalls around lower manhattan. we ought to make the subways more resistant to water. we are to maybe close off tunnels in ways that mean they can't be flooded. >> eliot: right. we evacuated tunnels but as you say, is there a way to seattle entrance to the tunnels so the -- to seal the entrance to the tunnels.
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>> there is if you spend enough money. the question is it worth doing that? there has been this proposal that we should do what great britain did in the thames. it is an expensive proposition. how much damage would it avert? >> eliot: the conservative, analytical mold of the last 20 years has been cost-benefit analysis. they love to say cost benefit analysis is the answer to all things regulatory, decisions about the s.e.c. to environmental decisions. we now know what the cost of this is. this is just one event. it is big enough to warrant the sorts of investments you're talking about. >> it is big enough to warrant the investments. if you believe it is reasonably likely to occur before the next 100 years which i think unfortunately, we have good reason to believe. >> eliot: unfortunately that's exactly right. the problem politically in getting budgeting decisions made when it is a hypothetical possibility that something adverse will happen in the
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distant future, nobody wants to spend money. it is now real. >> but it is real. but if you talk about saying let's spend $10 billion or $12 billion to do this, how are you going to get the money? et cetera, et cetera. whereas's just had a catastrophe that will cost us $10 billion. look at the contortion just to find the money to replace one existing 50-year-old bridge. >> eliot: right. tappan zee bridge. >> look at the struggle. >> eliot: about a $16 billion investment. >> right. look at the struggle. we should be replacing the bridge and making a lot of other investments. >> eliot: you have been one of the clarion voice on capitol hill for infrastructure investment. not just because it is a stimulus. because we need it for the growth of our economy. now we're seeing this in real time. >> it is a stimulus. >> eliot: that's not the primary reason. >> that's not the primary reason. it is necessary for the economy to remain competitive and for us to remain safe. one other example for right now.
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luckily, the george washington bridge was not affected. 93% of everything we consume the food, the water everything else in new york city, long island comes in over that bridge. if that bridge were shut, we would starve. it has to have redundancy. we've been talking about a rail freight tunnel under the harbor. >> eliot: do i remember a meeting about this in my office eight years ago. you've been an advocate for years. >> that would provide redundancy. there are other areas where we need redundancy. you can't rely -- if something happens to that one facility, there's no alternative. >> eliot: i hope people finally focus on this issue around are willing to allocate the dollars. has this event had a political impact and if so, in what way? >> it will certainly have a political impact. in what way is difficult to say. there are balancing considerations. for example, certainly the president by getting a lot of publicity, acting as president and doing a very visibly good
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job, that helps him. and governor romney, by not being the president, by being the challenger by being relegated to events like collecting food for people, that doesn't help him. so that certainly helps the president. on the other hand, you take a state like pennsylvania. where did the floods and damage go, did does it lessen the black turnout? that would hurt the president. i don't know how those things balance out. >> eliot: i want to talk much more local politics. you're up for re-election. i haven't seen ads for an opponent. >> i have an opponent. i always have a republican opponent but it is considered a fairly safe democratic -- >> eliot: your district after redistricting goes into brooklyn manhattan. >> period. it extends up to 122nd street on the west site. it only used to go up to 89th. >> eliot: i will make a bold prediction, i think you will be re-elected. it is a good thing for new york
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and all of those who believe in sane policies. jerry nadler, thanks for coming in. >> eliot: a brooklyn barber talks about mitt romney. viewfinder coming up next.
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carpets in your home with resolve deep clean powder. the moist powder removes three times more dirt than vacuuming alone while neutralizing odors for a clean you can see, smell and really enjoy. don't just vacuum clean. resolve clean. >> eliot: g.o.p. for obama. you heard me right. but first bill o'reilly calls the kettle black. jimmy kimmel visits a barbershop to talk romney and one young girl sums up our feelings the last week president offal elections. when it doesn't fit anywhere else, we put it in the viewfinder. >> since we are in brooklyn, i stopped into levels barbershop on fulton street. >> what do you think mitt romney can do to get more of the black vote? >> turn black. >> he can drop out of the race. >> i'm tired -- i'm tired of barack obama and mitt romney.
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>> that's why you're crying? >> oh. it will be over soon, abby. okay? the election will be over soon, okay? >> okay. >> you judge people by their associations. and that's what's very troubling about the democratic party in general. most democrats are honorable people civil patriotic well-intentioned but there is a lunatic fringe that has a lot of say in a party. >> let's go over some statements and you rate these on a scale of 1-10, okay? i like mitt romney. >> 1. >> zero. >> mitt romney represents my values? >> zero. >> mitt romney has -- >> zero. >> mitt romney is my -- >> zero. ♪
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♪ i don't care ♪ ♪ i'll pull down your underwear ♪ >> hi, sir we're here to be scared. [ screaming ] >> wow. >> thanks again for the haircut. i sat here for nothing. what goes on in this place? >> come on, man. you talk too much. >> i know, you're right. sorry. >> you can still pay for the cut though. >> thank you. now you're talking like a republican. >> eliot: talk show host who talks too much. a lifelong republican stumps for obama. former senator larry pressler joins me next.
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(vo) she's joy behar. >>current will let me say anything. >> eliot: a senior republican senator, a leader within the republican party and now an endorser of barack obama. larry pressler is known for a distinguished career devoted to public service. as a decorated combat veteran who, after serving two tours of duty in vietnam spent 22 years on capitol hill, four in the house and 18 in the senate representing the state of south dakota. all as a republican. he just explained in a column in "the huffington post" why barack obama has earned his vote. he joins me now. senator, thank you for joining us tonight. >> thank you very much. >> eliot: so let me just ask you why. you have been a republican. you say you are still a republican. why the decision to support the incumbent president? >> it is mostly because of the vietnam disability benefits. the romney/ryan budget does not
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include disability benefits. the disability benefits for veterans would have to compete with the military and with all other parts of the budget. president obama has laid out a plan. he's also said he's willing to raise taxes on the wealthy. and to reduce the military budget down to the level that the -- that the military has requested to pay for it. so this is a very serious matter. as i spent much of my volunteer time working with disabled veterans. in fact, i'm a disabled veteran myself. not very disabled but i have that classification. i intend to devote about half my time working with them and i'm very worried about the budget. >> eliot: sir, i say thank you for what you do, not because you're endorsing president barack obama. regardless of partisanship, what you do. you deserve the public's thanks for it. wrapped up in your answer were a multitude of reasons to support the president. one of them was interesting, you
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are a supporter of the military said you know what? mitt romney wants to increase defense spending almost without limit. and yet the president is willing to make the hard but smart decisions based upon what the military needs. that seems to go to a fundamental decision, explain that a bit more for us. >> yes the -- i'm a former member of the budget committee. but the joint chiefs of staff request military spending at a certain level. the amount we're spending is far above that because congress usually adds on favorite construction projects and military armament projects and by the way the big labor unions support those also. so we're spending more than is recommended and our national security is not any better. in fact, it would be -- we would have stronger national security if we spent more wisely on weapons as president obama has suggested. but what's happened is that everybody talks about being for veterans. veterans are almost overpraised
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these days and i think part of it is a subconscious thing to make up for the days when they weren't thanked. but in any event the budget is very little. for example completely disabled veteran only gets about $30,000 a quadriplegic disabled veteran gets $30,000 a year. people say well, he can also get food stamps but why have a veteran on food stamps? the point i'm making is it should be about $50,000 or $60,000 for a completely disabled veteran. we're very much in danger -- the ryan budget did not have anything for disabled veterans. it just sort of -- going to come out of the sky. now the romney budget does not provide for it but we're told that it will be fully funded. but whereas obama has made a specific commitment. he's also got a program for vietnam veterans until 2025. he has specifically talked about this and has put real numbers in his budget and he said we'll pay for it by reducing spending on
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the military and by raising taxes on the very wealthy. two very courageous statements. by the way i heard your earlier comments about infrastructure. eliot, we'll have to raise taxes in this country on everybody in the near future. i can tell my students student that. i didn't dare tell my constituents. especially on the wealthy. we have to raise revenue to pay our debts. i'm of the -- i was in the house of representatives when congressman john rhodes of arizona was our leader. he had a debtometer in his office. he said if you vote for spending, you've got to vote for tax increases to pay for that spending. and he kept track of it on every member. but things have changed since the early 1970s when i was in the house of representatives. but i'm an old-fashioned conservative republican in that sense. obama is closer to it in this budget. >> eliot: you've said so many fascinating things as i'm sure
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you do in your classes discussing these policy points. you've articulated, sort of a conservative ideology that was mainstreamed at a certain point in time. has the republican party left you? has the republican party gotten so consumed by its rhetoric that it's lost the ability to make the sort of hard judgment calls that you just articulated? >> well, i would be a critic of both parties to some extent. we need them both. we'll have them both. we need to work with them. but the republican party has become the party of big spending in terms of certain projects without paying for them. and more so than the democratic party at this point. now, regarding veterans benefits which i'm very interested in, especially vietnam veterans benefits which we've almost forgotten about we've forgotten all about agent orange and so forth but there is no provision in the romney/ryan budget for any of that. but there's just this blank check of no new taxes and increase military spending. i do not -- i have never met a vietnam veteran who's not a career veteran who is for boots
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on the ground overseas. because it is just -- and i'm one of those -- i was against the iraq war. i was against even the invasion of haiti. i just -- i bring our troops home from europe if i could. >> eliot: right. >> i'm very much a fan of mr. vass vich of boston university who has written a book "endless war." we're this syndrome of endless war and i think obama is closer to getting us out of it. >> eliot: yep. senator, your observations are fascinating and i think reflect the shift of the republican party and your point that both parties have shifted both deserve criticism is not only correct but is worth reiterating. since you are a republican voice making the statements, we all have to listen with great care. former republican senator, larry pressler, many thanks for your service and your time tonight. >> thank you. >> eliot: for democrats and republicans alike hurricane sandy could be a problem for election day. electronic voting amid
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blackouts. that's ahead with congressman raul grijalva. you dismee
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>> eliot: are some endorsements for mitt romney merely rewarding bad behavior in that's ahead on my view. be sure to join jennifer granholm in "the war room" with her guest cal penn now stumping for the president's re-election. as well as decorated veteran and democratic congressional candidate tammy duckworth great line-up at 10:00 p.m. with jennifer granholm in "the war room." our country's future depends on you. to help you make informed decisions, watch current tv's politically direct lineup. only on current tv. take the time to learn about the issues. don't just vote, vote smart.
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>> eliot: don't reward bad behavior. it's one of the first rules of parenting. during the financial cataclysm of 2008, we said it differently. calling a bailout to banks that had created their own misfortune a moral hazard. the bailout absolved the banks bad acts and created an incentive to make the same bad loans that created the crisis in the first place. we're seeing the political equivalent. editorial boards and columnists reward the bad behavior and negotiating tactics that created the political stalemate between the white house and congress that has caused the public's loss of respect for our political structure. how and where? read some of the editorials and columnists endorsing romney. the common thread is that romney will be able to work with the republican congress. he has shown the political facility to shift views suggesting that he will be
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amenable to the sort of negotiations that can produce deals. let me reinterpret this. the republican leadership who has a keep ploy, held the nation hostage on everything from the debt ceiling to meaningful jobs bills are being rewarded and the politician, mitt romney, who by his own campaign's admissions, has been devoid of constancy on major ethical and fiscal issues is being applauded for lacking principle. because mitch mcconnell and john boehner brought governance to a halt, their only principle was to say no to the white house, we should now serve up mitt romney as their chosen negotiating partner? such is the logic of the amazingly cynical and disappointing columnists to. read the des moines register endorsement of romney is to read a logic that would have justified neville chamberlain apiecement of the nazis. cave to the entity that refuses to negotiate and then blame the party that does stand on proper principle yet still tried in good faith to negotiate a deal for the public good. such skewed logic is horrific to
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read. credit ezra klein and some others for shining the light on this and shame on those who are rewarding the worst form of politics we've seen in many presidential cycles and the politicians whose campaigns have neither the guts nor will to speak truth to the public about their views on the tough issues we face. that's my view. what you're saying. (vo) she's joy behar. >>current will let me say anything.
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>> eliot: it seems like an odd thing to have to point out. but it's difficult to have electronic voting without electricity. few thought this would be an issue leading into election day with at least six states including the key swing states of ohio and pennsylvania that rely on electronic voting suffering serious power outages
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some election day plans may be severely disrupted. even for those voting early on paper ballots hurricane sandy has caused major logistical issues. in an election year filled with voter i.d. laws and voter suppression efforts the latest impediment could create another hurdle for some voters to overcome. joining me now is raul grijalva, cochair of the progressive caucus. congressman, thank you as always for joining us. >> thank you. >> eliot: one of the major impediments earlier this year were these crazy voter i.d. laws. the courts seem to have struck them down. that's a victory for democracy. are you satisfied by in large with how the courts have handled those cases? >> i think the courts handled it appropriately. and handled it based on the law. and that has relieved a lot of pressure but at the same time, you know, the organizations that are out there talking about
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fraud, you know, signs are appearing in latino neighborhoods in arizona saying fraud is a federal crime. will you go to jail. and i'm sure we'll have poll challenges. i'm sure we'll have people trying to intimidate people as they go to vote. particularly in poor communities in my state because that vote is going to be large. the turnout is going to be large. and so we're still going to deal with that remnant of what has been a suppression strategy for the last year and a half if not longer on the part of the republican party. >> eliot: there's absolutely no doubt. those efforts will be there. i know you and others will lead the charge forcefully against them. we cannot attribute to partisanship, obviously hurricane sandy is also having a disruptive impact in the sense it is going to make electronic voting hard if there are still power outages. even for early voters, it is causing a problem. you have spoken to your
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colleagues about what needs to be done to make sure people in certain communities especially poor communities get to the voting booth next tuesday? >> yeah, it is the implementation of access. making sure that in the process of restoring power restoring access to the electoral process that poor communities communities that are usually ignored in a lot of crises, economic and otherwise that that whole voting prerogative be equally -- the extension of protections to them go far. the administration knows our position. they're aware of it. they're as concerned about it as anybody else. so as we restore access, we want it to be done fairly and equitably across the board so that no communities get left behind and that the impact of some communities being left behind is not disproportionate to poor communities and communities of color. >> eliot: we hope that will be the case. let's fast forward to two weeks
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from now and certainly next january in the post-election moment when congress goes back to work. if, as you and i both will feel, the president is re-elected, the senate remains democratic and there are democratic pickups in the house will the playing field look different when it comes to discussing immigration law? will the republican party pull back from some of its heinous positions and open the door to meaningful compromise? >> well, certainly the examples here are arizona. some of the most vehement anti-immigrant forces in the state lost our election to primaries to more moderate republicans. the architect has lost his election. arpaio was in a very tough race. and so i think that doesn't have the legs it used to. certainly barack in the white house after what he did with deferred action in term of the dream kids and senate that is more solid and united in terms of democrats, we gain some seats. i think the momentum is on the side of immigration reform. many of us are going to say this
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is domestic issue number one as the president said in iowa. and we're going to push it. because i really believe that the republicans are going to wake up to the reality that that dog doesn't hunt. they'll vilify, marginalize immigrants as the only way to get elected has lost its steam. and we're very encouraged by the fact that that's happened and also very committed to the fact that now that's agenda number one and i think republicans in the house are going to have a tough time running away from this issue or trying to exploit this issue. >> eliot: the republican party will have to awaken, even if it doesn't awake ton the ethics and the policy arguments that are absolutely right it will awaken i think to the math and algebra latino voters aren't volting for a republican party that's against immigration reform and without a latino base of some sort, they won't win national elections. i think the political argument may be the more per vase situationive one to them. but it will work at the end of
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the day. >> you're correct. the death nail is there for the republican party. and whether they refuse to recognize it, which is stupid politically or they accommodate the reality it is all up to them. but the death nail is there. >> eliot: what is happening in your own state of arizona? it ewinged to be considered -- >> we have a great opportunity to elect a latino member of the united states senate. dr. carmona. who, six months ago nobody would have predicted the race to be neck and neck the representative from arizona. he has the endorsement of kyl mccain, all of the money coming in from the super pacs yet we find ourselves with few days left of the election, neck and neck election. furnitureout of the latino -- turnout of the latino community will be critical to carmona. the consequence could be earth
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shaking not only for arizona but a huge message being sent across the nation about the cleansing process that is beginning in arizona with the election of carmona to the senate. >> eliot: this weekend in particular, i'm hesitant to use weather metaphors but you're right it would be monumental if that were to go to the democrat. if flake would be defeated. very quickly because time runs short, isn't it the best negotiating posture or the democratic party when it comes to a fiscal cliff just let the bush tax cuts expire? >> oh, that's -- not only simple, it's right. it makes economic sense. and it makes huge political sense. that for democrats to shy away from that position would be a mistake. when go back during the lame duck that, has to be a -- >> eliot: we're going to have to continue this.
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